College Escrow: Choosing to Make a Stand

January 27, 2009
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tobie1College Escrow in Claremont is a standout, stand-alone and stand-up kind of company that, ironically, doesn’t like to stand out. We’ll explain:

A Standout Company

Like an outstanding umpire or referee, College Escrow works quietly behind the scenes to oversee, administer, navigate, negotiate, guide, and nudge the escrow process along to a successful conclusion, something it’s done for clients more than 17,000 times to date, without fail or error.

Since its inception in 1992, it has dutifully acted as a neutral and trusted third-party in thousands of real estate transactions, with no two alike, ensuring that neither funds nor title ownership to property will ever transfer from the seller to the buyer until all real estate, loan, title, legal and other contractual obligations and instructions have been faithfully followed and completed.

That’s the kind of track record and legendary attention to detail that has made College Escrow the first choice of so many real estate agents and their home buyers and sellers. “If we’ve earned a reputation for excellence and integrity over the years, I think it all stems from believing in, practicing and living up to a set of core ethics, principles and values we’ve laid down for our business,” said Tobie Medina, owner and manager of College Escrow. “We want to be serving, not self-serving.”

A Stand-Alone Company

Unlike a broker-owned escrow business or title company-owned escrow service, only independent escrow companies like College Escrow are regulated by the Department of Corporations. This strict state supervision and oversight provides consumers with serious safeguards against financial loss. For example, only with licensed escrow companies are the funds deposited in Trust Accounts subject to DOC audits without notice. In addition, Independent Certified Public Accountants audit and prepare annual financial statements particularly inspecting its compliance with minimum liquidity and other tests required by law.

Stand-alone escrow services like College Escrow provide other important consumer protections unmatched by title company- and broker-owned escrow services. For example, only independent escrow companies have an onsite manager with at least five years experience as an Escrow Officer. Moreover, it’s required that the employees of independent escrow companies be fingerprinted and pass criminal background checks. Finally, unlike broker-owned and title company-owned businesses, only independent escrow services carry a $5 million Fidelity bond to protect the trust account against theft or embezzlement. This fidelity bond guarantees that, in the event of theft of trust accounts, consumer funds are protected.

college-escrow-logo“In the wake of the financial scandals we hear about all the time, it’s more important than ever that people not only know where their money is, but also that their money is protected and insured,” Tobie said. “Independent, licensed escrow companies, not beholden to any outside influences, interests or profit pressures, are the first line of defense for homebuyers and property owners.”

A Stand-Up Company

College Escrow has a saying, “You have a choice – Choose wisely.” The saying, of course, recognizes the fact that consumers have the right to select their own escrow service. But the saying — a philosophy, really — speaks to College Escrow’s decision to be a strong advocate for and an active participant in the community. Its community support includes:

“College Escrow has always been and continues to be involved in the community,” said Tobie, who along with husband Vince will be hosting a fundraising hoedown at their home , April 4, benefiting the Claremont Community Foundation . “Our successes allow us the opportunities to serve, based upon our pledge of exemplary service to business and beyond.

“We have chosen to make a difference.”

 A Company in Good Standing

Too often, the public compares “escrow” to a big melting pot into which flow all the pieces of a real estate transaction. To the majority of people, escrow is that big black mystery box out of which all of a deal’s intricacies and complexities are ultimately hashed out.

College Escrow prefers that the escrow process be as transparent as possible and never a surprise to clients. Fostering this spirit, College Escrow encourages interested home buyers and sellers to drop by its office long before the escrow process begins, in fact, before listing their home for sale or undertaking their home search in earnest.

“We want to be there for people not just at the end of the transaction, but right from the start,” Tobie said. “We can do this best by providing buyers or sellers a net sheet to help them estimate costs, plan a budget and execute an effective home buying or selling strategy. There’s no fee or obligation. It just makes good business sense for people to know where they stand, especially when it comes to big financial decision like buying or selling real estate.”

College Escrow is a standout, stand-alone, stand-up company that doesn’t necessarily like to stand out. All the same, with its customer-oriented focus and dedicated service to the community, it will always be a company held in the highest standing by people who value those qualities most.

For more information about College Escrow and how it can help you, please call (909) 621-7855, email or visit its Web site at





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